The HD-TVE project

Hightech in High Definition
illus. 1: The guideway with a percipitation whirled up from the guideway

On April 8th, 2004, video material ready for HDTV about the magnetic leviation technology in Germany was taken for the first time during an excursion to Transrapid Test Facility Emsland (TVE) at Lathen. A 13 minutes long documentation which accompanies a group of tourists and shows persons who commit themselves to use of this high-technology arose from this. The material was completed in August, e.g. with driving takings from the cockpit.

The video is stored in a MPEG4 file format, which make possible playing it freely and manufacturer independently. The video is available after arrangement on CD from the GFM-eV at sending in of a sufficiently paid return envelope and an empty CD-R. This article describes the emergence history of the video and the admission technique used.

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What is HDV?

High Definition Video besides his professional counterpart for a high-definition TV (HDTV) which has already been established in Japan and the USA during the trick takings of this documentation and shall be presented to the wide audience during the wms 2006 in Germany. The specification of the HDV format was made by the Japanese companies Canon, JVC, Sharp and Sony in September 2003.

Comparision of video formats
illus. 2: The superimposed photo gives an impression of the future HDTV formats. These offer a considerable horizontal extension and more detail riches opposite the 4:3 standard video when viewing the things. There is the representation in original size, (192 KB).

" the resolutions of 1280x720 are (4:3) in the HDV specification in the frame format (progressive) with "square" microdots and 1080 x1440 in half the picture format (interlaced) with rectangular " for microdots for scheduled, respectively for 50 (PAL) and 60 (NTSC) pictures per second. Both variants lead the videos are stored by 16:9. to a represented lateral ratio on the customary MiniDV cassettes with a data rate of 19 or 25 megabits per second.

Detail improvements in enlargement
illus. 3: (the format 720p (middle) contains 2.22-fold information in the picture effectively opposite the standard PAL television, (on the right) effective in which for 3.75-fold for 1080i for the computation effort is even five times so high for the representation as when the standard resolution).

The two HDV formats make also higher demands on the hardware used for the taking and representation with that. Desktop computers should contain for 720p at least a 2 GHz pentium and for 1080i at least a 3 GHz pentium (or comparable Athlon) processor. The European Broadcasting Union, (EBU), recommends the use of progressive technologies, i.e. currently 720p and in future 1080p (what still goes beyond) the present specification. However, the use of 1080i of single sending institutions also is accepted.

A diploma thesis from Tobias Schwahn (Fachhochschule Stuttgart - Hochschule der Medien) and Alexander Schuch (Fachhochschule Köln), which has been supported by the Second German Television (ZDF), confirms the recommendations of EBU. The students pointed out, that the visual impression on the majority of the available HD-Ready TV screens (with 1366x768 pixels) is better using 720/50p videos than using 1080/50i videos. Furthermore, due to empirical results, progressive frames need about 35% less lines than interlaces frames to gain a comparable vertical resolution.

A favourable camcorder

The first HDV camcorder of the Japanese Victor Company came along 720p format for (NTSC) with the model number GR-HD1 at the market with this in the beginning of May 2003. An introduction of the PAL variant of the model (JVC GR-PD1) was intended for the autumn 2003 at the European market. This model is the video picture, however, is still equipped with the same chip as the NTSC-Version at him in the camcorder on the PAL standard resolution of downsized which still is, however, issued in the form of frame (i.e. as 576p) after all.

A certain image enhancement already indicates this but opposite present PAL videos, by the picture quiet higher definition causes. The market introduction of the European model, however, was considered half-hearted altogether with regard to HDV. But lets himself be seen with that it also similarly is the case like it at the commercial use of the maglev technology that the working area the Far East is than the European working area already further on this sector. Well, we must do everything to remain further at the ball.

For this reason a camcorder had to come from Japan. This could be ordered from a Japanese exporter as a "domestic model" over the internet. The camcorder lay pricely inclusive of dispatch and import duty approx. 42% below the list price of the low dissolving European version in November 2003. The whole had only a flaw: The manual, keys and the LCD menus were Japanese. An English-speaking manual could be found in the internet, though. Within a year, 20 hours of HDV material were created - not only for the HD-TVE project.

The HDV camcorder
illus. 4: The camcorder Victor GR-HD1

From the raw material to the cut film

Over the Firewire interface, which is also used when transferring takings from a market usual MiniDV camcorder to a PC, the video sequences could be transfered to the fixed disk of the computer under use of an enclosed high-density Capture Utility. As opposed to DV videos no AVI files are at this, taken singles picture contained but MPEG2 files, calculated, which of everybody contain every fifth singles picture of the video sequence in which completely are. The picture data between this contain only modification information or preview information regarding the in front of this and behind lying complete pictures. It wouldn't have possibly been different to put season on the MiniDV tape an hour. Well, further processing of the videos is put together the pictures displayed between every fifth singles picture arithmetically before they can be shown happen at this or this one. This is carried out also when playing DVD videos.

Is in a special file format as a MPEG transport data stream with the transferred videos (i.e. as a M2T file), though, which one of most software player isn't appreciated as valid. Newer DVD player is installed on a computer, it helps to rename the file name ending .m2t in .mpg to play the video files on the PC directly so sometimes. The VLC Player of VideoLAN with which the transport data stream files could be changed into more common MPEG program data streams loss-freely (i.e. in MPG files) proved as practical at this.

This stood this for the further processing of the single video files for camcorder enclosed for MPEG2 cut program for "MPEG Edit Studio LE 1.0" as well as Adobe premiere at the disposal for 6.5. The former had innumerable limitations with regard to conversions opposite this one at a price of 4000 US dollars freely saleable version. A program package was offered by Cineform named Aspect HD which guarantees an absolute further processing for the use together with Adobe premiere 6.5 at the end of 2003. (this should for what kind of one cost 1200 dollars private household is not quite insignificant), the budget also offers some special video effects, though, though. These are changed in front of the processing of the original video sequences into a special "Cineform-HD" AVI file format whose Schitt Adobe premiere then masters. At this program an activation is also required as when Windows XP, though. This also has, that more not played the changed AVI files on another computer without acquisition/transmitting of the original licence or with at all a different one the consequence been able to program be reprocessed.

An alternative to the use of Aspect HD was a conversion program of computer Computertrend TV, the first European HDTV transmitter in the internet. With aid of this a sequence could be created by singles pictures which could be put together to AVI files. Computertrend TV uses the professional variant of the HDV camcorder, the JVC JY-HD10, which uses the same video chip for their productions and describes the Workflow for HD10.

The Workflow was modified by the automated processing of the original files described above with the program VLC and the following conversion into the Pegasus MJPEG-AVI format in the meantime. The latter was then carried out with help of the Freeware VCopy. The film also edited by Adobe Premiere was then stored intermediately in the MJPEG format without quality losses. But it requires 72 GB space per hour of master copy to store it in the highest quality step (there are "only" 12 GB needed per hour for DV). The master copy was finally converted with help of known Freeware VirtualDub into the XviD format. The video could be transferred therefore onto a CD.

Which one as a data storage medium for the original material suitable double-sided DVD RAMs, delivered in a cassette as a matter of priority for use in video recorders scheduledly are, with a capacity of 9.5 GB particularly good? They offer a fundamentally higher data security (life time approx. 30 years) than burned DVDs and on the other hand they can pick up the contents of a complete MiniDV tape cassette with 720p videos.

XviD why?

Currently, there are trends of content providers, to deliver high-resolution videos either in the MPEG2 format or in the WMV format. The first one needs higher amounts of data. The second one from Microsoft, at present which can be played only on Windows computers. Some offered DVDs include the film 720p views version, which can be played only over the Windows-Media Player after a checkin on a Microsoft computer. A too strong dependence of a market leader holds some dangers here. Competition stimulates the business. Open standards maintain the access to information of today also for the following generations.

XviD (www.xvid.org) is an Open source project for a MPEG4 video Codec. It split, as this got commercial from the DivX project. The coding of XviD partial one better image quality as this one of the knowner DivX, since the source code of a lot of "honorary" software designers is improved steadily. XviD may be used without license fees in the commercial environment e.g. for education purposes. Already there are DVD players, which are able to playback data DVDs containing XviD and DivX videos. This corresponds to the further development of Audio CD players, in the meantime, which also can play MP3 files.

XviD videos are also on Macintosh and Linux computers with the MPlayer playable. This corresponds to the principle of an open access to the information.


For playing the produced video a PC of the higher performance category is needed (see above). So that the possible resolution of the video can be represented the monitor or Beamer must in the breadth a resolution of at least 1280 pixels beseitzen. The newer notebook computers with 16:10 display prove to be quite practically. If these one use mobile processors, these are already powerful enough with a clock frequency after 1.5 GHz to play the video with out dropped frames.

International version

For interested parties from the foreign countries a version is available with English subtitles.

Notes of thanks

Have supported me at the taking place of the video:
E. Dittmer, R.Gellekum, J.Metzner, F.Rumpel, W.Rumpel
To the he people which do a good job on the TVE in Lathen notwithstanding the opinions of single politicians and the partly unfriendly German press about a remarkable technology, my recognition is valid.

Titel Patent Hello 400 km/h 300 km/h Impression


A little more seems to himself to move in direction of HD(T)V in Europe in the meantime because Sony and Canon have brought first HDV camcorders onto the European market. The 1080i use format for this. The higher resolution of the recorded material against 720p is not visible on monitors with 1024x1280 or 800x1280 pixels, for that is a monitor with 1200x1920 pixels required. After appearance of the camcorder, edit programs and driver software have immediately been full of some problems for the further processing. HDV is still a young standard and there are similar problems like five years, though when the processing got popular of DV videos on the computer. The production of a HDV video still will remain pioneering work some for a while.

German television company ProSieben/Sat.1 broadcasts on one channel HDTV (resp. upscaled PAL) since October 27th, 2005 in regular operation. It uses effizient H.264/AVC-Coding via ASTRA satellite. A little bit later Premiere HD went on air as Pay TV channel. But their program could not be seen for many weeks. Surprisingly, the comanies decided to use the new transmission standard DVB-S2, while only few S2 demodulation chips as sample were available. Youngest Free TV Channel on ASTRA is Anixe HD since May 17th, 2006. Also since May 2006, there exist first satellite tuner cards for PC in greater quantities. For best results (without dropouts) during playback it is necessary to take hardware with at least a 3,2GHz-Pentium or an Athlon Dual Core 4200+ (2,2GHz).

Michael Dittmer

High definition videos to download

Creative Commons Lizenzvertrag
These videos are licensed under a Creative Commons License.
By name + no commercial use + no derivation

A commercial use is not allowed because of the seconday non profit license from the producer of the GEMA free music. Origin is listed in the trailer of the video.

Rapid Maglev Trains - Today, we are forming future of transport
(2011, 1280x720, 7:00 minutes) Maglev_Trains.720p.xvid.avi (229 MB, ISDN 64kbit/s 11:15h, DSL 1024kbit/s 30min)

hÄmmungslos (free from hammering)
(2009, 1280x720, 0:59 minutes) hAEmmungslos.720p.xvid.avi (42 MB, ISDN 64kbit/s 2:15h, DSL 1024kbit/s 6min)

Our members in action - Der GFM-eV Image-Film
(2008, 1280x720, 1:59 minutes) GFM-eV_auf_Info-Tour.720p.xvid.avi (24 MB, XviD-Version).

Testing maglev technologies again - Wiederaufnahme des Versuchsbetriebs auf der Transrapid-Versuchsanlage in Lathen
(2008, 1280x720, 2:00 minutes) Wiederaufnahme_des_Versuchsbetriebs_auf_der_TVE.720p.xvid.avi (44 MB, XviD-Version).

A New sTaR is Born - New Transrapid comes to Test Facility - Der Transrapid kommt ins Emsland am 19.04.2007
(2007, 1280x720, 3:20 minutes) TR09-aNewStarIsBorn.xvid.720p.avi (89 MB, XviD-Version).

Before it becomes Chinese (2006, 1280x720, 60 Sekunden) BevorErZumKinesenWird.xvid.avi (35 MB, ISDN 64kbit/s 1:45h, DSL 1024kbit/s 6,5min).

Trailer of the film: High tech in high definition (2004, 1280 x720, 26 seconds) TVE-Lathen-Title.xvid.avi, (10 MB, ISDN 64 kbit/s 0:27h, DSL 1024 kbit/s 1.5 min).

GFM board meeting in Hamburg (2004, 1280 x720, 32 seconds) GFM.xvid.avi, (31 MB, ISDN 64 kbit/s 1:30h, DSL 1024 kbit/s 5 min).

GFM with VDEI on the NordBau Fair 2004 in Neum ü nster (2004, 1280 x720, 57 seconds) of NordBau-2004th.xvid.avi, (68 MB, ISDN 64 kbit/s 3:30h, DSL 1024 kbit/s 12 min).

Brief report about the 4th Transrapid specialist conference (2004, 1280 x720, 2:30 minutes) TR-Fachtagung.xvid.avi, (95 MB, ISDN 64 kbit/s 4:30h, DSL 1024 kbit/s 15 min).

Brief report about the 5th Transrapid specialist conference (2005, 1280x720, 2:33 Minuten) TR-Fachtagung2005.xvid.avi (54 MB, ISDN 64kbit/s 2:40h, DSL 1024kbit/s 10min).

If it isn't to see any picture when playing the video file, you don't have the Codec (coder/decoder) yet on your computer XviD installed. You then must execute this installation once. When required the Codec can be removed from the computer also completely. The installation is particularly simple on Windows and Macintosh computers. There is the installation program with the translated XviD spring code:


Knowledge is needed for an installation on Linux computers about playing in so-called RPM packages. These packages in current version can RPM search engine retrieve for the respective distribution with help a special one. RPM packages also can be found for player software which is ready for XviD, e.g. MPlayer there

Other sources of supply for downloading have "Windows" or "Mac" or "Linux" found over a search engine by input of the keywords "XviD", "download", for themselves.

Low definition videos (for Pocket PCs and older computers)

Before it becomes Chinese (2006, 320x180, 60 Sekunden) BevorErZumKinesenWird.mpg (5 MB, MPEG-1, ISDN 64kbit/s 0:15h, DSL 1024kbit/s 1min).

GFM board meeting in Hamburg (2004, 320 x180, 32 seconds) GFM.mpg, (3 MB, MPEG 1, ISDN 64 kbit/s 0:09h, DSL 1024 kbit/s 0.5 min).

GFM with VDEI on the NordBau Fair 2004 in Neum ü nster (2004, 320 x180, 57 seconds) of NordBau-2004.mpg, (6 MB, MPEG 1, ISDN 64 kbit/s 0:18h, DSL 1024 kbit/s 1 min).

Brief report about the 4th Transrapid specialist conference (2004, 320 x180, 2:30 minutes) TR-Fachtagung.mpg, (17 MB, MPEG 1, ISDN 64 kbit/s 0:55h, DSL 1024 kbit/s 3 min).

Brief report about the 5th Transrapid specialist conference (2005, 320x180, 2:33 Minuten) TR-Fachtagung2005.mpg (16 MB, MPEG-1, ISDN 64kbit/s 0:50h, DSL 1024kbit/s 2,5min).

© by GFM-ev